I’ve heard people say that dance is art in motion. Well, this is not the kind of art you would find in a fine gallery in some swanky down town area. This is the kind of art you see in someone’s home and have to ask “Where did you find this?” Then you they tell you, “Oh, my daughter, she does this and her grandfather before her and it’s just in our family.” You leave their house feeling like you have shared something special and that they have given you a gift.
Watching people spin and dip to the sound of Dominican music was this art;this gift. We went to a Rancho Tipico, which is the common name for a dance hall. They play music very loud, so loud in fact you can’t talk to the person next to you. It’s ok though, you’re not there to talk, you’re there to dance. The worst dancers on the floor look like seasoned professionals and the best dancers perform with the ease and grace of someone who has been doing it their whole life.
These dances aren’t taught. Everyone here dances. It’s an expression of joy and a way to literally step away from the stressors of life. There was no fighting, no air of conflict. There were only people doing what these people have done forever and to me it was art.